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A five-day festival filled with music by 40 groups in five Midtown venues is about to engulf the Sacramento scene.
The In the Flow Festival, an annual event going from Thursday to May 16, will be bringing out improvisational players of jazz, rock, blues, electronic, poetry/spoken word and visual art.
Co-organizer and guitarist Ross Hammond, 33, addressed why it was created.
Hammond said it is important to create a music event in Sacramento and bring out the unknown and/or unrecognized talents.
“I knew enough people and acts, so we decided to put something cool together,” Hammond said. “It is a celebration of creative music and art. It is the music, art and poetry community just coming together and presenting their craft.”
The other innovators behind the celebration are Rob Woodworth and the late Byron Blackburn.
Among the many local performers this year, there will be jazz and improvisational musicians from Los Angeles.
Composer Vinny Golia, 65, will be performing with various people in the festival, but he is also bringing his group Vinny Golia Sextet.
Golia has performed at the festival for the past three years.
“My music is a mixture of jazz, rock and folk tied together,” he said. “It is a blend that is challenging for listeners and the players, compared to other music. It has a groove, it can swing, and at times it is serene, other times noisy.”
A night of poetry and music mixtures at Luna’s Cafe titled “Poetry VS. Band” will consist of regional poets trading verses with area jazz musicians.
Bassist Shawn Hale, 39, will be performing with multiple groups, and he will take part in the “Poetry VS. Band.”
“I am looking forward to the many fantastic musicians,” he said. “The event as a whole is a great thing to be a part of. Looking forward to it starting.”
Among the many events, on Saturday there will be free performances at Phono Select Records.
“There are not many events like this in other cities, where you can see a very wide selection of music, be exposed to live music instead of iPods or CD players,” Golia said. “It is live. People making music in the spare of the moment, you cannot beat that.”
The festival started in 2008 as a Midtown event. It relocated to Broadway and now is back to Midtown.
“Our original venue closed and we needed a bigger space,” Hammond said. “For two years we were at Beatnik Studios on Broadway. We moved back to Midtown this year after being persuaded by Dal Basi, owner of Phono Select Records.”
They are now working with Explore Midtown to make the In the Flow Festival a celebration of Midtown culture, Hammond said.
Antiquite Maison Privee, one of the venues, plans to cater, but for the most part Hammond said the surrounding Midtown business restaurants will be the best places for food.
The five venues are Antiquite (2114 P St.), La Raza Galeria Posada (1022 22nd St.), Luna’s (1414 16th St.), Phono Select (2312 K St.) and the Press Club (2030 P St.).
All the locations are walkable and bike-able, Hammond noted.
“The event is so dynamic,” Hale said. “There are different performers, and it’s got a little bit of everything as far as what people may enjoy for music. It is such an artistic and community-inspired event. To miss out you will be missing out on a great essence of Sacramento.”